Josh McDaniels seemingly has one foot out the door in New England, and Tom Brady appears iffy on playing for the Buccaneers next season.
Could both land with the Raiders?
Las Vegas reportedly will interview McDaniels on Friday for its head coaching vacancy. Whether McDaniels eventually leaves the Patriots remains to be seen, but multiple reports indicate it now is a real possibility. And, with Brady mulling retirement and at least one reputable reporter openly suggesting the 44-year-old could want to play for a new team, it didn’t take long for fans to float a McDaniels-Brady team-up with the Raiders.
This certainly is a fun idea, but is it realistic?
First of all, we have no idea whether Brady, McDaniels or the Raiders even would want this. Brady, in particular, might not be interested in joining a new franchise for the second time in three years.
However, on paper, it definitely is possible.
Quarterback Derek Carr is entering the final year of his contract in Vegas, but the Raiders could cut or trade the 30-year-old this offseason without carrying a dead cap hit in 2022. Cutting bait with Carr also would wipe out his $19.8 million salary for next season.
The Raiders, currently with just over $9 million in salary cap space, might have to do additional maneuvering to fit Brady — and Rob Gronkowski? — though there are plenty of ways to figure that out.
But things get tricky with Tampa Bay. Brady is under contract for 2022 and carries a dead cap hit of just under $41 million. Plus, much of the money in the extension Brady signed last year was deferred to 2022 in an attempt to help the Bucs bring back much of their Super Bowl-winning roster. So, the details of how Brady would “finesse his way out of Tampa” (as Mike Florio put it) are a bit confusing.
That said, it’s not like the Bucs will hold the greatest player in NFL history hostrage.
“If he said, ‘I want out,’ I don’t think they’d prevent him from leaving,” Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer said during Friday’s episode of “Toucher & Rich” on 98.5 The Sports Hub.
In all likelihood, Brady will not be playing for McDaniels and the Raiders in 2022. But crazier things have happened in the NFL, and only two years ago the idea of Brady playing for the Buccaneers was considered lunacy.